Sort-of OT: Learning Python
alex at tweedly.net
Sun May 7 12:49:52 EDT 2006
Rodney Somerstein wrote:
> Also, while Bob Ippolito has done what seems like a fairly nice job on
> py2app, the standalone builder for Mac Python, he seems to hold a very
> low regard for readable documentation. He wrote the tool for himself
> and makes it available for the good of the community. But, people
> should just know how to make it work as far as I can tell. He will
> answer questions, but the answers usually assume that you have a
> sufficiently deep knowledge of Python to understand them. The problem
> seems to be that Mac Python is an all volunteer effort and no one has
> volunteered to write comprehensive documentation tying Python and
> py2app together so that a real newbie has a good chance of
> understanding it all. It is understandable that no one has written the
> same documentation for the Mac for wxPython and PythonCard as they
> aren't Mac specific.
> The best approach, as far as I can tell is to first of all learn
> Python. You do this by first installing Python 2.4.3 from the build
> available at http://www.python.org/download/mac/. This page is a basic
> page describing how to get started and why to install Python rather
> than using the one built into OS X. Then, use any decent book on
> Python to learn the language itself.
> Next, I would learn to use py2app. Unfortunately, the only good
> resource that I know for learning this tool is to join the MacPython
> SIG mailing list -
> http://www.python.org/community/sigs/current/pythonmac-sig. You will
> get all the help you need there with a little asking.
> Then, learn wxPython for developing GUI apps. You can probably do this
> at the same time that you learn PythonCard. Again, join the PythonCard
> mailing list and probably the wxPython mailing list for help.
> If you happen to find a resource that shows you how to create a
> standalone hello world app in Python on the Mac, please post about it
> here. I've never seen such a thing but would love to find one.
Good advice - but I'd switch the order around a bit - use PythonCard to
learn how to program in Python, I find an easy to use GUI much more
friendly for learning. And I'd leave py2app until later.
PythonCard comes with a tool (standaloneBuilder) which does a good job
of easing the problems of building distributable executables for Windows
and Linux. The Beta version of it is much improved to offer a choice of
tools - and the next step after that will be to add py2app support. So
it's not there today - but there is light at the end of the tunnel for a
GUI front-end to building distributables even on Mac.
And the relevance of all this to the Rev list ? To remind us how much
there is to be grateful for in having the ease of use and ease of
distribution provided by RunRev. Rev ain't perfect - but it does have a
lot of advantages.
Alex Tweedly http://www.tweedly.net
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